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Worst days and routes for Christmas getaway traffic jams revealed

More than 31 million journeys will be taken over this Christmas period, with this Wednesday and Thursday predicated to be the worst for traffic delays.

This Wednesday and Thursday will be the worst days for jams according to data from the RAC and Inrix

That’s according to a study by the RAC and Inrix, which has found that drivers using the M1, M25, M5, M6 are set to be hit with long delays as leisure and everyday commuter traffic combine this week; 25 million leisure trips alone are predicted to be taken between today and the end of Sunday by drivers.

Inrix data indicates the M1 in Bedfordshire and Northamptonshire, the northern and western sections of the clockwise M25 and M6 in the West Midlands are set to bear the brunt of the festive traffic. Two of the longest delays are expected on Sunday, with drivers facing queues of more than an hour and a half northbound between Flitwick and Daventry, and nearly an hour on the M25 clockwise between the junctions for the M23 and M40.

Inrix transportation analyst Trevor Reed said: “Drivers desperate to get away for Christmas are going to find themselves competing with commuters and shoppers for road space, so we recommend keeping tuned in to the changing traffic conditions on local radio and via in-car apps.”

There is a bright spot though; Highways England has said more than 800 miles of roadworks will be completed or lifted in time for Christmas. This means around 98% of motorways and major A-roads will be roadworks-free in time for Christmas.

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for 16 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. As Business Editor, Natalie ensures the group websites and newsletters are updated with the latest news.